Music for Teacups

Melissa Haviland & David Colagiovanni

Melissa Haviland & David Colagiovanni
Music for Teacups
45 rpm vinyl record accompanied by chain of paper cutout teacups
17.8 cm (vinyl record), 63.1 x 11 cm (teacups),

21 x 20 x 8 cm (box)
Small Craft Advisory Press: Tallahassee, Florida
2012
Collection of Small Craft Advisory Press (SCAP)

Music for Teacups
00:00 / 01:15

Read Me!

Melissa Haviland and David Colagiovanni’s Music for Teacups encapsulates the defiance of womanly expectations through the art of smashing objects. At first glance, you see a simple black box. Upon opening, you discover that the lid is attached to a black ribbon. In the box, there is an accordion of black teacups that were precisely laser cut. Accompanying the teacups is a vinyl record that plays a beautifully cacophonous symphony of crashing teacups. The design of the record sleeve looks like the sharp edges of a broken teacup. 

The teacup is a symbol of tradition, proper etiquette, and the refinement of women. The shocking sounds of teacups breaking, bouncing, shattering, and twirling illustrate the many ways a woman can subvert the traditional narrative. The sounds are not dainty or orderly. They are unrefined and chaotic. Each crash of a teacup signifies the shattering of a feminine stereotype. Haviland and Colagiovanni ask us to reflect upon the patriarchy—a social system in which men hold the majority of the power and women sit on the sidelines. Unafraid to break things, women can create their own narratives and find their own place in the world.

Music for Teacups
00:00 / 02:33